Have you ever left a yoga class feeling so good that you’ve thought about becoming a yoga teacher yourself? The practice of yoga is now a widely accepted and popular form of mind-body exercise that can be made accessible to all through regular classes and teacher training. Teaching yoga can be a fulfilling way to supplement your income, or you can dive in to make it a full-time career.
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Here are some things to consider if you are thinking about becoming a yoga teacher:
- Think about where and who you may want to study yoga with. In the United States, most studios and gyms that hire yoga instructors look for a minimum of 200 hours of Yoga Alliance certified training. If you have a regular studio or teacher you practice with, see if they offer a teacher training. Make sure that it is Yoga Alliance approved, and covers a wide range of topics such as anatomy, philosophy, sequencing, assistant teaching, and more.
- Build your resume. Even if you do not have much teaching under your belt, you can include your training such as teachers you have studied with, styles you have trained in, and workshops you have taken. Include the components of your teacher training and any guest teachers as well. Be sure to list your experience in assisting classes as well.
- Make business cards. You can design your own business cards for free at some vendors online, or have a custom one designed specifically for you. Keep them on you to hand out to friends or anyone you come across interested in yoga or hiring an instructor. Leave them at your local businesses or on community bulletin boards.
- Once certified, you can begin sending your resume out to local yoga studios and gyms. When you are first beginning to teach, many yoga studios may have you start out by subbing classes, or in some cases, assisting a senior teacher.
- Prepare for an audition. Most places will want you to come in and teach a short demo class. They may also ask you to come in and take a class. Prepare your strongest sequences, but do not feel like you have to squeeze an hour class into a 20-minute demo. Choose a section, such as centering, warming up, Sun Salutes, and a few seated poses. If it is more suitable, teach seated or restorative postures. Make sure you also know what your prospective employer is seeking out of a yoga teacher, such as a particular style or type of class.
- Think outside of the box. Pitch your yoga class to corporate offices, schools, or anywhere else you can think of.
- Make a website or Facebook page. Facebook, in particular, is a great way to market yourself and keep others up to date on your classes through social media. You can also incorporate other social media platforms as well. A website is also a great way to house all of your important information such as your resume, photos, biography, and class schedule.
- Continue practicing yoga. Do not put your own yoga practice aside to teach others. This is one of the most important aspects of becoming a great teacher. Keep up with your personal practice at home and continue taking regular classes with your favorite teachers. Also, keep your training up to date by taking workshops specifically designed for teachers or becoming certified in a specialty form such as Yin Yoga or aerial yoga.
Teaching yoga can be just as much a practice as doing yoga itself. Just like in your practice, you will receive just as much as you put in. Yoga can be a great way to carve yourself out in a niche market if you are successful, but just as with anything else, it will take hard work, effort, and patience. Give yourself the time and space that you need to grow as a teacher, and should you desire it, your rewards will be fruitful and abundant.